JIM’S THIS & THAT: January 2019

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JIM’S THIS & THAT: January 2019 And suddenly you know: It’s time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings. Meister Eckhart If we can recognize that change and uncertainty are basic principles, we can greet the future and the transformation we are undergoing with the understanding that we do not know enough to be pessimistic.   Hazel Henderson *** Take a look inside for… 1. Links to community calendars … and including … 2. News You Can Use: articles, activities, and resources 3. Area organizations &… Read More →

Rescheduled – January 9, 2019 Meeting – Tree Advocacy 101: Tree Huggers vs.Tree Muggers

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The January meeting has been rescheduled for Wednesday, January 9, 2019.  The meeting will be held At Brookhaven College, in the Miles Building H-125.

See below for more information on the location and time. 

It took years of lobbying and negotiating to update the Dallas tree and landscape ordinance. Steve Houser was there from day one in 2005 all the way up until the renegotiated ordinance was passed in 2018. The revisions include incentives for tree preservation and sustainable practices, as well as penalties for non-compliance.

Steve is currently negotiating with city hall on the natural next step for the ordinance; the addition of a Neighborhood Forest Overlay which will protect more trees and encourage proper maintenance.

The success of the ordinance and now the overlay are completely dependent on the determination and effectiveness of articulate tree advocates. Steve will discuss the history of tree advocacy in the Dallas area and the basic procedures and processes that tree advocates can follow to encourage the success of tree preservation initiatives. He has been involved in tree battles as long as he has been an arborist and has a unique knowledge of the subject as a result. The hope is to pass along the knowledge to those who may need it in the future and to help build support for the overlay.

Life in the tree care business began for Dallas native Steve Houser while he attended morning college classes and simultaneously spent afternoons maintaining the trees at Brookhaven Country Club in Farmers Branch, Texas. Nights and week-ends he fed his passion for flying and became a licensed FAA aviation mechanic, attended Pilot Ground School, and scored 100 percent on the Federal Aviation Administration exam, a rare feat.

One of the first certified arborists in Texas, Houser is owner/president of a Dallas-Fort Worth area tree-care experts firm that he started 38 years ago. The firm employs many of the state’s top consulting arborists, as well as national and international award-winning tree climbers. He is well regarded by his peers within the industry; the Steve Houser Award of Excellence (aka “The Houser Cup”), established in 2001, is awarded each year to the Texas state tree-climbing champion by the International Society of Arboriculture, Texas Chapter.

In his spare time, Houser contributes more than 1,000 volunteer hours each year toward worthwhile tree-related causes, educating the public about trees and natural resource-related issues. He teaches forest ecology to Master Naturalists and tree biology/arboriculture to Master Gardeners in North Central Texas. He has been an advisor for Vision North Texas since its inception and works diligently to encourage responsible and sustainable land use.

The January 2019 Chapter meeting:

Date: Wednesday, January 9, 2019

6:30 Meet and eat
7:00 Introduction and Announcements
7:20 Featured Presentation
8:45 Adjournment

The meeting place for January is:
Brookhaven College
Miles Building Room H-125
3939 Valley View Lane
Farmers Branch, TX 75244

As always all of our meetings are free and open to the public.

Hope to see YOU there!

Dragonflyer #75 – November 2018

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A Message from our President

Bruce Stewart, NTMN President, provides a first-hand account of the 2018 Annual State Conference. In addition to several great observations, he details the impact the NTMN chapter has had on other chapters, from our project entries to our presentations.

Some exciting news is headed our chapter’s – and our region’s – way. Read Bruce’s article for more!

Just some of the NTMN awards won at the 2018 Annual State Conference in Georgetown, TX.

The December Member Meeting is Only A Few Days Away

On December 5, 2018, we’ll be having our end of year celebration during our December monthly meeting time. Once again Texas Discovery Gardens will be hosting us, and our agenda is full of the usual fun. TDG opens at 5 pm, dinner is provided, and the event should conclude by 8:30 pm. Free for members, and $15 for guests (please pay at the door).

Among other Master Naturalist things, we will welcome new members and you can also pick up your certification pins. If you want to pay your 2019 membership dues ($30), you can also do that at the door in cash or check, or, you can pay by credit card via PayPal.

See you soon!

Please note: The date to RSVP has passed. 

2019 Spring Class Application Deadline – TOMORROW

Spread the word. The North Texas Chapter is accepting applications for the Class of 2019 through Friday, November 30, 2018. If you know someone who is passionate about the natural world and is ready to volunteer for nature, please let them know about the class.

With thirteen sessions covering local ecosystems, and the flora, fauna, weather and geology of North Texas, the class begins on February 5, 2019 and concludes on April 30, 2019. In addition to Tuesday evening in the classroom, three weekend field trips will cover aquatic, forest, and prairie ecosystems.

Master Naturalist certification requirements include completing classroom and field trip requirements, volunteering 40 hours at approved nature-related projects and attending 8 hours of approved advanced training.

The application is available on ntmn.org. Follow the “How to Join” link on the right-hand side of the screen under the “Want to Be a Naturalist?” heading.

Click here to see some photos from our 2018 Spring Class photo album.

NTMNs Out and About

Native Plant Rescue at Becks Prairie
Our first plant rescue at Becks was a success!

Click here for the Becks Prairie Plant Rescue photo album.

NTMNs working at Becks Prairie.

Volunteer Projects At a Glance

The Fall 2018 Big Chapter Project
North Texas Master Naturalists joined efforts to successfully complete a wonderful project at Harry S. Moss park in Dallas.

Click here for the Fall 2018 Big Chapter Project photo album.

Junior Master Naturalist Program
The Junior Master Naturalist Program is growing! NTMNs and the Perot Museum of Nature and Science launched the program in September 2015, and it has quadrupled in size!

Related: Click here for the 2018 Coppell Junior Master Naturalist photo album.

Fall Class Happenings

Our Fall Class Represents Us Well
One of the goals of the class was to reverse the decreasing volunteer hours in our southern Dallas county projects. In 12 weeks, our fall class has stepped up in multiple ways and they’re not done yet.

Click here for the Fall Class photo album.


3rd Quarter Volunteer Award
Carolyn Rozier: A Truly Multifaceted Award Winner

4th Quarter Volunteer Award
Carroll Mayhew: Documenting Our Chapter’s History

Member Spotlight: Dorothy Buechel
Jennifer Weisensel is passing The Dragonflyer torch to 2018 Class Member Dorothy Buechel. Jennifer asks some questions of Dorothy to help you get to know her better.

Dorothy Buechel and her father, Ted Bauman. Both are NTMNs from the class of 2018.

The Media Room

The below photo albums are submitted by our phenomenal NTMN photo committee and project leaders:

Annual Meeting in October 2018
Open House on November 13, 2018

Now Calling All NTMN Videographers!
Do you want to volunteer behind the video camera? In 2019, we’re looking to boost our video committee. Email us at videos@ntmn.org and let us know how you want to get involved!


HELP WANTED – Amphibian Watch
This is a fun and important Citizen Science project and the current project lead, Barbara Turner, would like to find another Master Naturalist to take on the lead role. Is it YOU?

2018 NTMN Member Survey
It’s been 4 years since we’ve completed a general membership survey and your opinion matters! Please take a moment to fill out this important survey.

2019 Election Results
Meet your new 2019 Officers and Directors!

A Note From Our Editor
Looking ahead to more chapter video content in 2019.

General NTMN Information

Monthly meetings are usually held on the first Wednesday of each month starting at 6:30 pm and are always open to the public. Check ntmn.org for speaker announcements and location.

Officers and Committee Listing

Our Mission

To develop a corps of well-informed volunteers to provide education, outreach and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural wild areas within their communities within the state of Texas.

NTMN Member Spotlight

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By Jennifer Weisensel

Meet Your Next Dragonflyer Newsletter Editor: Dorothy Buechel

Quick Facts:

Hometown: Nashville, Tennessee

NTMN Class: 2018

Fun Fact about yourself: I took the TMN training class with my father, Ted Bauman. He always finished the homework before I did.

Jennifer: How did you hear about the TMN program/NTMN chapter?

Dorothy: I first encountered NTMN at Native Plants and Prairie Day at White Rock Lake several years ago.

Jennifer: What made you want to become an NTMN member?

Dorothy: I love to be outside and was curious to learn more about nature and how to help local ecosystems thrive. I’m especially interested in butterflies and other pollinators. I love having a community of like-minded nature lovers to share my passion with.

Jennifer: What projects have you already gotten involved with as a NTMN member?

Dorothy: I volunteer in the greenhouse at Texas Discovery Gardens once a week and have loved learning about the plants that thrive here and how to propagate them.

Jennifer: What made you decide to volunteer to be the Newsletter Editor? What goals do you have for it?

Dorothy: Bruce called and asked if I’d do it, and I’m not that great at coming up with reasons not to do things, so I figured why not give it a try. I have experience with the software since I do a newsletter for Friends of Northaven Trail so it seemed like something that would be a good fit for me and would benefit the chapter. I’m looking forward to getting to know the people who contribute so much to the newsletter.

Jennifer: What do you think is the biggest impact the TMN program provides to the community?

Dorothy: TMN helps people learn about what is going on in their cities and why it is important to be friends of nature and wildlife. I believe it was Dan Northcut who made a comment that really struck me during one of our classes this spring. Paraphrasing what he said: “When you’re driving miles across Texas and you say there’s nothing out the window, it’s only nothing until you learn what it is: native grasses, wildflowers, habitat, and ecosystem that is important to a great deal of our native flora and fauna.” So if we can help make this “nothing” into “something” it seems people will appreciate it, care about it and hopefully take care of it a whole lot more.